The death anniversary of Dr. BR Ambedkar, the "Father of the Indian Constitution," is commemorated annually on December 6. A common interpretation of "Parinirvan" is "nirvana" in the afterlife, or liberation from rebirth and decay. On December 6, 1956, less than two months after becoming a Buddhist, Dr. Ambedkar passed away, making good on his promise that he "would not die a Hindu."
Ambedkar was intensely spiritual and aware of the relevance of religion in public life, yet this is often overlooked due to his scathing critique of major religions. It is commonly known that Ambedkar held the position that Buddhism was the greater religion, but less well known is his view that the Buddha's teachings were superior to the prevalent atheist ideology of Marxism.
Ambedkar has compared Buddhism and Marxism in an essay written in his characteristically clear and logical style. He argues that while both seek to create a just and joyful society, the ways propounded by Buddha are more effective than those of Marx.
I measure the progress of a community by the degree of progress which women have achieved.
Freedom of mind is real freedom. A person whose mind is not free though he may not be in chains, is a slave, not a free man. One whose mind is not free, though he may not be in prison, is a prisoner and not a free man. One whose mind is not free though alive, is no better than dead. Freedom of mind is the proof of one's existence.
A great man is different from an eminent one in that he is ready to be the servant of the society.
Every man must have a philosophy of life, for everyone must have a standard by which to measure his conduct. And philosophy is nothing but a standard by which to measure.
The outcast is a by-product of the caste system. There will be outcasts as long as there are castes. Nothing can emancipate the outcast except the destruction of the caste system.
Equality may be a fiction but nonetheless one must accept it as a governing principle.
I like the religion that teaches liberty, equality and fraternity.
They cannot make history who forget history.
Be educated, be organized, and be agitated.
If I find the constitution being misused, I shall be the first to burn it.
Cultivation of mind should be the ultimate aim of human existence.
We must stand on our own feet and fight as best as we can for our rights. So carry on your agitation and organize your forces. Power and prestige will come to you through struggle.
Men are mortal. So are ideas. An idea needs propagation as much as a plant needs watering. Otherwise both will wither and die.
Political tyranny is nothing compared to social tyranny and a reformer who defies society is a more courageous man than a politician who defies Government.”
Law and order are the medicine of the body politic and when the body politic gets sick, medicine must be administered.
Caste is not a physical object like a wall of bricks or a line of barbed wire which prevents the Hindus from co-mingling and which has, therefore, to be pulled down. Caste is a notion; it is a state of the mind.
However good a Constitution may be, if those who are implementing it are not good, it will prove to be bad. However bad a Constitution may be, if those implementing it are good, it will prove to be good.
Every man who repeats the dogma of Mill that one country is not fit to rule another country must admit that one class is not fit to rule another class.”